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Judge Orders NY Dairy to Stop Selling Cows

A Wyoming, New York dairy farmer was ordered to stop selling cows for slaughter until he complies with federal law.

U.S. District Court Judge Richard J. Arcara ordered Jerald P. Schumacher, who sells dairy cattle through an auction yard in Pavilion, NY to be slaughtered for human consumption, to cease doing business.  The U.S. Food and Drug Administration cited a sole proprietor of the dairy farm, Schumacher, for selling cows that tested positive for illegal residues of antibiotics.

Judge Arcara, who was appointed to the federal bench by former President Ronald Reagan, signed a consent degree of permanent injunction on March 25, ending Schumacher’s ability to sell cows for human consumption.

The FDA complaint said Schumacher has sold cows for slaughter for at least 10 years with residues of the antibiotics penicillin and sulfadimethoxine in the animals’ edible tissue. The agency also said he illegally gave the cows higher-than-allowed dosages.

“The sale of animals for animal-derived human food products that contain illegal levels of animal drugs poses a significant public health risk,” said Dr. Bernadette Dunham, D.V.M., director of FDA’s Center for Veterinary Medicine. “FDA will continue to take action against producers who violate federal laws intended to protect the health of the public and of livestock.”

The farm was most recently inspected between Oct. 6 and Oct. 21, 2009, and Schumacher was given a written report detailing the violations. After FDA issued a warning letter in 2006 requiring him to abide by the law, violations continued.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture, which has the responsibility for detecting drug residues in beef sold for human consumption, cited Schumacher six times in the past 10 years.

Schumacher also violated the law by failing to keep adequate records of which cows were medicated, according to the complaint.

FDA routinely finds dairy farmers who are selling cows for human consumption that have higher than allowed levels of animal drugs in edible tissues.  On March 8, or example, FDA issued a warning letter to the Double B. Dairy, LLC in Wendell, ID for selling an animal for human consumption that had higher than allowed levels of the drug Flunixin in its system.

© Food Safety News
  • hhamil

    Dan, I find it interesting that we are seeing case after case of dawdling regulators like this finally getting around to doing their jobs and food safety advocates use it as an argument for MORE regulation.
    A quick web search shows the wide press coverage this event has gotten showing the FDA in action. It appears to be doing its job.
    How about calling for the enforcement of existing regulations?
    How about accountability for those regulators that have allowed this to go on for so long?
    Instead we hear about how underfunded the FDA is and excuse them.
    Food safety will NOT improve materially in this country until the food safety advocates give up their cozy relationship with the regulators, demand that the regulators do their jobs and hold the inspectors and their bosses accountable when they don’t.
    When will you write that editorial, Dan?

  • Harry Hamil

    Dan, I find it interesting that we are seeing case after case of dawdling regulators like this finally getting around to doing their jobs and food safety advocates use it as an argument for MORE regulation.
    A quick web search shows the wide press coverage this event has gotten showing the FDA in action. It appears to be doing its job.
    How about calling for the enforcement of existing regulations?
    How about accountability for those regulators that have allowed this to go on for so long?
    Instead we hear about how underfunded the FDA is and excuse them.
    Food safety will NOT improve materially in this country until the food safety advocates give up their cozy relationship with the regulators, demand that the regulators do their jobs and hold the inspectors and their bosses accountable when they don’t.
    When will you write that editorial, Dan?

  • Doc Mudd

    *
    “…a sole proprietor of the dairy farm, Schumacher… selling cows that tested positive for illegal residues of antibiotics”.
    *
    Hmmm… it turns out to be a small family farmer, not a sinister ‘factory farm’ chronically and deliberately abusing antibiotics during the past 10 years!
    .
    Activists would have me believe that only dreadful ‘large corporate farms’ are capable of such irresponsible behavior, that small mom and pop operations are pure; no inspections or testing necessary for the little local guys. “Buy Local” and “Know Your Farmer” — sure, good luck with that!

  • hhamil

    Once again, “Doc Mudd,” puts words in the mouths of those of us in the local, healthy food movement that we have not said.
    Rather, we say that when we screw up (not if because no one is perfect), there is a short. clear supply chain and the source of the problem more easily identifiable. Simply put, we can’t run and hide even if we wanted to.
    And, once again, “Doc Mudd” who are you? Just another blogger who likes to throw bricks that don’t advance the discussion? Or is there another reason for what you write? Anyone can easily know who I am and has the opportunity to evaluate my biases, etc. I would like to be able to do the same with you.

  • Harry Hamil

    Once again, “Doc Mudd,” puts words in the mouths of those of us in the local, healthy food movement that we have not said.
    Rather, we say that when we screw up (not if because no one is perfect), there is a short. clear supply chain and the source of the problem more easily identifiable. Simply put, we can’t run and hide even if we wanted to.
    And, once again, “Doc Mudd” who are you? Just another blogger who likes to throw bricks that don’t advance the discussion? Or is there another reason for what you write? Anyone can easily know who I am and has the opportunity to evaluate my biases, etc. I would like to be able to do the same with you.

  • Doc Mudd

    “Buy local”, “Know your farmer” and “Oppose S.510”.
    I am quite certain that I have frequently heard these sympathies uttered by proponents of the “local, healthy food movement”. Quite certain, indeed.
    Regulation: best practices, inspections, testing and traceability. Oh, and accountability. These are the essential cornerstones of modern food safety, local or otherwise.

  • ProudNYDairyFarmer

    I know this guy who calls himself a farmer, this farm was an accident waiting to happen, frankly I am surprised it took so long.
    Jerry is NOT AT ALL indicative of the a true dairy farmer, trust me.